BlogTrailblazerAva Princi – Ryde Secondary College | Top 50 Year 12 Trailblazer 2021

Ava Princi – Ryde Secondary College | Top 50 Year 12 Trailblazer 2021

Trailblazer Ava Princi

What are the Trailblazer Awards?

The Trailblazer Awards celebrates Year 12 students beyond their ATAR, recognising those who have overcome personal challenges and used their final year of school to positively impact their community.

Our Trailblazers will have the opportunity to network with industry leaders, build their personal brand and profile as a future leader, learn key career skills in our 3-day Pathfinder Accelerator, and so much more!

Find out how Ava navigated Year 12 differently throughout 2021!

Introducing: Ava Princi

Category: Social Impact and Change

School: Ryde Secondary College

Career Aspiration: Law


  • Success in class action lawsuit Sharma v Minister for Environment
  • Establishing a duty of care to protect young people from climate change for the first time in the world
  • Published op-ed in the Guardian Australia

What makes Ava a Trailblazer?

Ava Princi has been making big strides towards tackling climate change. In 2020 she was a litigant in the landmark climate change lawsuit, Sharma v Minister for Environment, which was decided in the Federal Court in June 2021. Ava, along with six other members from Strike 4 Climate, aimed to stop the approval of the Vickery Extension project mine.

By bringing forward a class action lawsuit, they proved that the Federal Minister for Environment has a duty of care to protect young people from the impacts of climate change. Ava was heavily involved in the court proceedings, drafting her own affidavit on the disproportional impact of climate change on disabled Australians to help build the case, undergoing media training and appearing in court. She also fulfilled domestic and international media requests, which included writing her own Guardian Australia op-ed.

The case was a huge success, establishing a duty of care to protect young people from climate change for the first time in the world. Ava and the team received thousands of messages of support from young people around the world!

She has also been involved in the creation of a crowdfunder to fight the Minister for Environment’s legal appeal. It has raised close to $250,000.

Communicating to media outlets, the court and the group’s supporters has helped Ava develop her communication skills. She has acquired higher level public speaking and writing abilities, now recognising the importance of these skills in fighting for a cause and inciting change.

Ava suffers from New Daily Persistent Headache Disorder subset Migraine, a form of continuous migraine which limits her functions and ability to perform day-to-day activities. She had to juggle completing her HSC year with endless treatments, appointments, hospital stays and painful symptoms — this posed a significant challenge. However, opting to complete Year 12 via pathways gave Ava the opportunity to better tackle some of these obstacles and maintain a high-achieving academic record. 

Ava hopes to study law and arts, wanting to learn more about transitional justice, human rights and genocide studies. 

“My goal is to work in a humanitarian, legal or policy advising capacity in areas of the world where human rights violations have occurred. My absolute dream would be to work on an international court of justice like the ICC”

Ava was able to graduate Year 12 and manage her disability, all while fighting for climate justice on a macro-scale. The efforts of Ava and her fellow team members in the climate change lawsuit are truly inspiring. They have started an important conversation, encouraging young people around the world to speak up and have their voices heard. For these reasons, Ava is one of our Top 50 Trailblazers!

The Top 50 Year 12 Trailblazer Awards

The Trailblazer Awards aim to identify and celebrate students who use their final years of school to invest holistically in the skills and experiences that will maximise their own future opportunities and make a contribution to the future of our society.

Our winners for the Year 12 Trailblazer Awards have demonstrated initiative in volunteering for their school or community, have participated in co-curricular activities, and have held leadership positions within their schools.

Learn more about who placed in the Top 50 Year 12 Trailblazers here!

About Art of Smart Education

At Art of Smart Education, we’re an award-winning provider of holistic tutoring and mentoring for students in years K-12. Our mission is to help students answer the difficult question, “What am I going to do with my life when I finish school, and how do I get there?” 

We understand that true success involves mastering study, career and leadership skills while maintaining your wellbeing, not just excelling in academics and as a result, over the last decade, we’ve supported over 10,000 students to achieve their best and maximise their options for life after school.

Each year over one million young Australians, parents, and teachers access our guides, videos and resources to navigate the journey through high school.

45,861 students have a head start...

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